Category Archives: My Stories, Flash and Poem

Where you will find the fiction I have created and information about my works. Things my outlines to my stories, short pieces of flash or song fictions, and my poetry. Overall, anything related to what I write, or the things I have written.

LoQ: Remember Our Roots

Coming at you with this week’s installment of Letters of Questioning:


Fireside Writing Dreamland’s Insurgents,

Sometimes I think it is as simple as letting everything go and letting those few scant words grow! Give them room to take root, a bit of sun and they will blossom before your very eyes! A little water and care and you will have that thing finished in no time! I have faith in that.

Your talk of Homer and his ~long~ tale, and how we have moved his place in our lives brings to mind fairy tales. They too have been adapted to our modern times. Not only are there the original cautionary tales, but they have been formatted for our children, seeing as many thing the originals are too gruesome.  What is more, we even see retellings as complete novels and books, not only for young adults, but also in formats just for adults!  Talk about something that withstands the test of time!

Hmmm… I think we need to learn more of this Egyptian god! There is something powerful in remembering of tales. They were originally created that way on purpose.  Our modern times… where one no longer even remembers a phone number could learn a thing or two from those old forgotten times! I am not one to say we should bring them back, and yet… I also feel that we have lost something very valuable, and it would be worth bringing to mind.

I recently learned of this place, I think it is in Germany where they are building this monastery the old way! And I mean old! It is all being done by tools they make by hand, using a beautiful old blueprint that is the oldest known blueprint.  They are taking the time to bring these lost arts back! Maybe it is something that is up to us… maybe we too should be bringing back some of these lost arts of storytelling?  We talk of Writing Posse, of building something bigger, something lasting that we really believe in. What if it were something more than a network? What if it were a school, a place to bring back the forgotten arts? Food for thought…

Seasons don’t really change… it is more of a cycle, just like empires and culture. It all moves in this massive cycle, bringing us what we need when we need it, even if sometimes we don’t think it is what we want. But you are right, we do need the old ways, maybe not exclusively, for there are many things we have created that are for the better, that help build doorways that we never would have dreamed possible. Connecting to others who can help build even more! And yet… we can’t forget those roots!

I am pretty sure madness reigns, but no worries, we are all mad here! As you know, I am all about venturing into the unknown, charting a course, unveiling those things lost, forgotten, and the things we could only ever dream of. But that is part of the beauty of writing, of books! They give us that!

Ahhh yes, Gilgamesh… and yet, would one really want that everlasting life? To watch everything you love fade away? I think we do the opposite because maybe things are not what we need? Fairy tales have taught us that, have they not? But… the sheet that covers the mysteries are part of the adventure! Good, bad, does it really matter, so long as we are experiencing something? Always moving forward! I hope your nap was good, it was well deserved, I am sure, but now… now I say this, How do we move forward?! How do we build that empire?! How do we bring back what was lost? And what exactly should be brought back?

Venturing ever forth,



As always, we would love to hear from you! Leave your comments to the letters below, and if you have ideas for where our letters go next, don’t hesitate to leave your thoughts and ideas in the comments as well!  We love to hear from you.





LoQ: Epics & Poets

Here is Dreamland, coming at you with this week’s Letters of Questioning!

Dear mad maven Ravyn,

Writing IS the pits! The dissertation comes slowly. It’s like watching an iceberg move, it’s glacial – and what’s more, the climate has been hostile to its very existence. It melts while it moves! Two jobs did not for a good time make. But the worst is over now, I hope. Today I got a few scant words on the page. Not bad. Either like seeds, they’ll grow, or at least for now take root.

Your musings over meandering mumblers reminds me of two things. First, the classic greek oral epics and their blind poet. I refer to the Iliad and the Odyssey, of course! Can you imagine having to board blind Homer for a few evenings? Those are ~~long~~ stories, and almost as bad as the bible in some spots, what with the genealogy and other boring details. Well at least they don’t ~translate~ in a pleasing way, either in language or time. And yet, at ~the same~ time, there are some good scenes. It adapts well to our other modern modes. We may not let Homer in through our front door, but we let him in through TV, movies, new books. He costs less to feed and clothe that way, too, I imagine, and we don’t have to listen to him snore by the fireside when he’s done improvising his recitation for the night.

But I think too of a very old story, older than Homer even. The story of the invention of writing. It’s from Egypt, which was already old when Greece was young. One of their animal-headed gods got annoyed with the invention of writing. “How will people remember anything,” lamented the hoary old bird, “if they grow weak by referring to what is written!” Poor bastard. His complaint endures but I seem to have forgotten his name.

We seem to think we know why the seasons change now because of science, but I might argue (who am I kidding, “might”? all i ~do~ is argue) I might argue that in a bigger, metaphorical sense, the season changes and no one knows why. The empire crumbles, the culture is stale, the platitudes about truth and freedom feel weary. You’re right; we need the oral tradition again. I’m afraid when the books have screens that even my routes of escape and education are really just spying on me. I’d rather have someone to talk to.

A hearty congratulations on the publications. It’s so pleasing to see hard work pay off! I know the cookbook will bear fruit ~ha~ before too long as well. Does the madness reign or does a productive rain quench its thirst? Whatever the case may be, I hope you manage to take the work by reigns and lead us further into the unknown, uncovering the mysteries of life, the universe, and everything.

Speaking of mysteries, one more old story – from Babylon, which was old when Egypt was young. In the fertile crescent, god-king Gilgamesh was promised the secret of everlasting life. All he had to do? Not fall asleep. No sooner were the instructions given than Gilgamesh fell instantly asleep. I’ve always enjoyed our penchant for doing the exact opposite of what we want. On second thought, the mysteries look pretty fetching with a sheet on top. Underneath might be horror, hell – I think while you’ve got the wheel, I’ll just have a nap.

By the fireside,

~dreamland’s insurgents~


LoQ: Storytelling

Coming at you with another Letter of Questioning!

 Dear drowned Dreamland,

I think that the dissertation will be more like a spring, ever fed of ideas, and never going to run dry than a dam that stagnates. Just sayin’.  I think water goes hand in hand because of the creative flowing spirit of writing!

As far as the cookbook, well… honestly I see it as more of ending up celiac is my own personal apocalypse. But I do hope that there is a healthy showing of the connection of words and food.  I mean honestly, words sustain us and without stories the world would be a bleak place indeed! I mean think on this, storytelling has been part of humanity since the dawn of time! In fact, traveling story tellers were treated as honored guests! As time moved on, they were even in every court! They told tales of heroic deeds, explained the changing of the seasons, and helped provide entertainment and learning.

I feel like something of that oral tradition was very important and I feel like in our age of electronics and “too long, didn’t read” mentality, it is something we sorely miss and need in our lives once more!

And yes, I agree, I think that sharing what it is like to live so differently than others, through storytelling, and offering these journey’s to find food one can eat and make themselves offers a beautiful opportunity for those who could never imagine how hard it really is to be so isolated, so removed from the world we live in today.

Ahhh, seems I too am dwelling in the infernal hells. I mean honestly, is not writing it’s own pit of hell? That leaves one suffering all too often? But the rewards are ever so worth it!

Camp is going alright, I am making progress in the cookbook. I just hope that I can do justice to the idea I have in my head of what this can become! And time has passed, I actually managed to get four new pieces published in different genre’s even! Rather amazing to me. How about you? How goes that journey? Any progress on the dissertation, now that you officially have the path to take? Where has life taken you?

From the pits of insanity,


I hope you enjoyed! Please share your thoughts in the comments below!

LoQ: Food of the Apocalypse

Welcome to this weeks guest installment of Letters of Questioning:

Dear castaway Ravyn,

Well, the prospectus defense is behind me, on to writing “the real deal,” the actual dissertation. “Defense” is really a poor word for the process. My advisers – like any good advisers, I imagine – were less like barbarians at the gates and more like security experts in their own right. I think “inspection” would be a good term. Is this dam going to hold water when the creative juices are turned on?

What is with all the water metaphors, in writing? Is it maybe that whole “water is life” slogan? I love the nautical themes you’ve come up with lately.

Like when you say, “nail down” a mission statement, I think of that scene in Moby Dick where Captain Ahab nails a Spanish doubloon to the ship’s mast, a reward for whoever first spots the elusive white whale…. A mission statement is a valuable thing. A piece of gold to keep the attention focused on the task at hand! Of course, it’s Ahab who spots the whale … and we all know what happens to that poor Luciferian bastard of a hero. Belay that allusion, boatswain~

Your ideas for the cookbook lately have been delightful! I love the idea of gluten-free as post-apocalyptic. And an epic quest to recover lost recipes. There have been many years now of apocalyptic stories, but they rarely, rarely discuss food. Never positively. Never a focal point in the plot. And the connection between food and language! The opportunity for fresh and interesting ideas abound. The connection between the past and the future. A future more alien than many of us (dirty gluten eaters) can imagine. A way for us to wrap our brains around it. So often the gluten-free get dismissed out of hand, but for folks really suffering from an affliction, it is (looks like, at least, from my observations) hellish.

I’m dwelling on the infernal today, it seems…. Must not have enough hell in my life, now that the defense is over.

How progresses the cookbook? The preparations for Camp Nano? I finally was assigned to the cabin, and I’m looking forward to starting writing – officially, I mean. I started drafting the dissertation some time ago. Speaking of the devil, I ought to go freshen up that draft with some of my most recent research, and the opinions my “consultants” gave me.

From Davy Jones’ Locker,

~dreamland’s insurgents~

We love to hear from you, please leave any thoughts and comments below!

LoQ: Core

Time for another Installment of Letters of Questioning!

My poor dizzy friend, Dreamland’s Insurgents,

You know… I think you are touching on something deeper when thinking about ideas.  Because to me… whenever I read a book, or when I even look at something I have written, even knowing that it is just an idea that may have blossomed from a prompt, it shows something about ourselves. It shows tiny glimpses of who we are.  Of course, what that says about me, and some of the very dark things I write, I couldn’t really say, or maybe I don’t want to face it, hehehe.  But I think, in all honesty, it is one of the deepest, most almost spiritual parts of writing that is at its very core, and prolly the most important thing to consider when we are looking at writing.

I think that being able to pin point the very core of our processes into a few sentences is what allows us to create/do something so much more, something deeper!  It is from finding that little core bite that allows an author to nail down the deepest part of the plot of a novel, and I think that a mission statement does that same for us in life!  All too often we just let the tides of life batter us around! Well, NO MORE! Stand firm, and find that core! Or keep floundering… I am good at that too.

I have to say, going forward, I am hoping to find my lost motivation.  Not sure where I left it… maybe in my poor little boat that I sank so I would never have to leave the island, that is now battering me with storms?  I am looking at prepping, Camp NaNo is just around the corner and I will work on my cookbook! The stories to be told I hope will find a way to shine! Maybe the cookbook needs a mission statement? At the least it could use a one sentence summary!

What projects does this letter find you working on? In the ever rising tides are you finding that you are still managing to stay afloat of your ever increasing demands on time and life?  Or are you, like me, feeling the tides rising faster and you sunk your own boat?

Trying desperately to craft a raft from sticks and twigs,


How about you, our friends.  Where does this letter reach you? Are you happy on a cozy island? Or are you on smooth seas or bumpy waves?  Do you find yourself digging to the core of your writing or instead just letting the tides take you where they will?  Do you have any burning questions? Or maybe you are searching for a treasure with a map of no destination?  Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

LoQ: Words Kinda Day

Another installment of our very own correspondences, the Letters of Questioning:

Dear island-bound Ravyn,

Oh, the painful irony! Unable to learn make it to your workshop because of an injured foot. A lesson in the importance of mobility? Cruel fate? A metaphorical missed step? Only a coincidence, of course, but definitely the material from which layered, poignant literary material is cut….

Missteps is a nice segue to my academic work. It goes slowly. Days where all I can do is focus on the work that pays the bills – the teaching, the extra job. Some days like today I can get a few hours in at the coffee house and get some serious work done~ Nevertheless, the work is important in its own fashion. The study of literature overlaps with history, anthropology, law, philosophy, art, music, science, even math (gasp!). But to me, the most important feature of that overlap – what literature uniquely brings to the table – is the study of ideology. How do people make ideas? How do ideas turn into a system of beliefs? How are those beliefs structured and how are they visible behind the things we do, say, and make? It’s endlessly fascinating to me. In one sense, I am a step closer today to understanding these things and helping make them legible to others, but in another very real sense, I’m learning over again every day.

So yeah … teaching mission statement. Mission statements are very hard to put into a concise form! This, you and I have learned well! How the hell, I ask you, do we squeeze the entire process of teaching and learning, one of the fundamental things which make us human, into just a few sentences?! (It makes about as much sense as a mission statement for writing!) But yes. They help! There is something you said about making the rewards we, as individuals, feel about writing or teaching sort of a central part of the statement. That helped me a lot. Seeing others grow as writers in my classroom is fundamental. It goes way beyond what the university as an institution can measure, too. For me, it is seeing students become critics, skeptics, trouble-makers in their own right. Cuz the world belongs to the trouble-makers!

Today is definitely a “words are nothing” day. That could mean a lot of things in itself! Words are easy; they are light; it’s nuthin. Or it can even mean the opposite: they’re meaningless, they’re trivial, they refuse to come; there’s nuthin there…. Yep. It’s a “words are nothing” day!

Where are you at when this letter finds you? I love your ideas for a book of prompts. That sounds like a kind of giving back after writing your flash fiction. After so much inspiration from the prompts of others, its time to give folks some prompts of your own! And the cycle goes ever on…. Are words everything, then? Ha!

Stomping in dizzying circles,

~Dreamland’s Insurgents~

How about you, my friends?  Do you find that you see who people are, what their ideas are from the essence of self in their work? Do you ever relate with words are nothing; both from the easy side or the trivial, meaningless side of things? What are your thoughts and feelings? Please, share with us your answers to our questions! This is so much bigger than the two of us, and we want you to be a part of it!  And if you have any burning questions of your own, don’t hesitate, we are always looking deeper!

DFF: Cyborgs are Real

Coming at ya with another fun flash fiction! I hope you enjoy.

Today’s Prompt:  “Holy shit. They are real.” “I tried to tell you.”  W/Cyborg that has a glowing red eye

Today’s Story:

Cyborgs are Real

“Holy shit. They are real.” Hamish said.

“I tried to tell you.  Why don’t you ever believe me?” retorts his sister.

Photo by Amr Elmasry on Unsplash

The man moving in front of them had a jarring gait.  The strange mechanical leg thumping the ground with every step, shaking everything around them. At the kids whispers, it looks at them. One eye glowing red, something deep inside sparking.

“Oh that can’t be good! Hamish… let’s get out of here.” Sylvia squeaks.

“Don’t. Move.” Comes the cyborgs demanding voice. All too human, making him that much scarier.

“Run Sylvia. I will distract him,” whispers Hamish, hoping that he can come up with some way to save his sister, from the half man, half robot now heading their way.

“Oh this can’t be good.”Sylvia turns to flee, and a strange light hits the ground in front of her.

“I said. Don’t. Move.” Growls the voice. “Don’t made me hurt you.”

Slowly turning back around, she moves as close to her brother as she can.

“What do you want from us.” Hamish says. Trying to be demanding, but the quiver in his voice ruins the effect.

“I don’t know. I just know that you have to come with me.” The cyborg looks a little confused.

“Are… are you okay?” whispers Sylvia.

“What are you doing?” asks Hamish. “Have you lost your mind?”

“No. He… looks confused. Maybe he just needs our help.”

“I am not confused. Just seems there is some kind of programming that demands I take you with me.  I seem to have no current memories.  Now. Come with me.” He points towards a building to their left.

“Umm… alright.” Sylvia says.

“Seriously… this is going to get us killed. Or worse.” Hamish grumbles. Turning to follow his sister, his arm around her.

“Oh, where is your sense of adventure, Hamish. Who knows… maybe now we will know why we woke up on the hill. Maybe now we will finally have some answers as to why we are so far from home.” she says quietly.

There you have it… What story do you get from this prompt? Please share it in the comments!  And if you like what you find here, remember you can find me published in these anthologies: MN Emerging Writers and the National Edition!

LoQ: Time of Reflection

Another installment of our very own correspondences, the Letters of Questioning:

Dearest Dreamland,

UGH! The grind never ends does it?!  But we must ever push onward and upward! I have the faith that you will take and twist it to your advantage at the end of the day!  Just as eventually I am sure ~ you and I ~ we can make this tilde a thing!

Man alive, those edits! I didn’t think they were ever going to end! They got me a bit behind on the ‘dream’. But I know I will catch back up. Of course, managing to miss the two bottom steps and dislocating and spraining my foot… that seemed to get me even further behind!  But I digress!  Practice… yes! So much so with these pieces and I honestly am rather thankful for them.

Actually, being laid up leads me to a new topic. Something that I think draws to the very heart of the original intent behind the making of these very letters.  A dream that set us on a path of questioning.  Some years ago I set out on a path, I drafted my very own Writing Manifesto, and recently we were taking a deeper look at mission statements which made me think.  There is something about being laid up that leaves you a bit more time to think than normal, and it seems a wonderful time of reflection, so I have been thinking deeply on why I write.

I know that I shared with you that Tattoos & Knitting left me flustered and ready to quit writing, as it was so well received.  And then you had that Teaching Mission Statement assignment, (how did that go, by the way?), and I reworked my Artist Mission Statement to reflect more on who I am now as an artists, and well… here we are. How important, and well, maybe how much do you think it helps, to have a Mission Statement, a Manifesto? What would you find as important to include?

As far as the mobile workshops, I was sadly not able to make it to that workshop I wanted to attend, due to my inability to walk, but I definitely want to look into it for the future! I mean, how fun would it be to work with a group of people and show them that we can all write a story in just a few moments of time!  Maybe to go with that I need to think about crafting a book of prompts to move forward, and sell alongside a workshop! Oh the ideas, they never seem to end! So many ideas, so little time!

And the koan… wow, yes! That is such a truth. The power words provoke… How about I counter with my own:

Words are all and they are nothing.

Naturally, I am inclined to write an academic article defending both! But who has the time? (Yes, I know, time, like words are just a construct.) I am always ready to join in some anarchy!

I leave you with this: What of your academic pursuits. It is a hard trail to blaze, working on a doctorate, getting that dissertation ready.  Where are you on that path? Are you moving towards what you desire? How do you see that fitting in the greater scope of a writing path?

Ever ready to defend my island,


How about you, my friends?  Do you ever take the time to create your own Manifesto’s? Your own direction to lead your craft, your art, your very existence?   What are your thoughts and feelings? Please, share with us your answers to our questions! This is so much bigger than the two of us, and we want you to be a part of it!  And if you have any burning questions of your own, don’t hesitate, we are always looking deeper!

DFF: The Escape

I wasn’t really going to write today, and then… while streaming I decided you know what… this is what I do, and so I did.  And wouldn’t you know it, I ended up with a piece longer than I anticipated! It is amazing how sometimes, even when we don’t really feel like it, just doing it is the answer.

Today’s Prompt:  Welcome to the land of Nightmares. Where terror reigns and the only escape is in your wildest dreams.

Today’s Story:

The Escape
It was time. I wanted nothing to do with this sleep project. At first I thought it was easy money. What they didn’t tell you though, was that you would never sleep again. Oh sure, you were technically asleep… drug induced, even. That did not mean you were resting. No.
Instead you were Welcomed to the Land of Nightmares, a sign welcoming you and offering, where terror reigns and the only escape is in your wildest dream. This study… a quick buck, so I could get across to the East Coast and my sister who was waiting for me, who needed my help, was the biggest mistake of my life. They studied your brain patterns as they sent you to another dimension. I don’t know exactly how they had managed to figure out how to send you there, but I do know that there was something sinister and wrong about it all. The orderlies just a little too sadistic, the drs a little too out of reach. Questions that would usually be answered, and seemed to be answered on the surface when I first started, were no longer even bothered with the pretense of an answer.

Photo by Nevin Ruttanaboonta on Unsplash

The others don’t really seem to care. They are sucking down the drugs and falling into exhausted heaps. I don’t know why my metabolism is affected differently, but I have heard the nurses talking to the doctors. They don’t like that the drugs seem to wear off on me much sooner than any of the others.
Today is the day though. If I want to make it out of this situation… I have to do something today. They are supposed to up the drugs tonight, and I don’t know if I can get clear enough of the fog if I let them administer them. Of course, they don’t know I know what they are planing. If only there was a way to save some of the others.
Sliding my jeans on quickly, I grab my gear from the small closet, leaving on the hospital gown, trying to blend in a little. Glancing carefully down the hallway, I watch as a nurse walks into the room at the end of the hall. If I have timed it right, I have around seven minutes to get past that room and out the front doors. Taking a deep breath, I scurry down the hallway, heading for the vending machines at the end, trying to make it look like I am just out for a snack. Ducking down the side hall, I see the front doors, a big desk in front of them. Three nurses standing between me and freedom.
Inching my way carefully down the hall, I try to be as quiet as I can, knowing I will only have a moment to scoot out the doors before they hit the lock down button I see on the desk. Hmm… I wonder how many have tried escaping that they have a lock down button!
No time like the present, I take a deep breath and run for all I am for the doors, sweet freedom bathing my face with the rays of the evening sun, setting on me. I gasp for air as I hit the outside, metal grates sounding behind me with heavy thumps. Knowing they will be coming I run for my car, jumping in I fishtail out of the parking lot, no idea where I am heading, just knowing I need to get away from here.
I wake up with a wail! NUUUUUUUUU.

I hope you enjoyed! More and more I am finding this challenge to be incredible!  I encourage you… even for a month, try it out! Or even once a week, take a prompt, even one you find here and just write! Set a timer for 15-20 minutes, and just let the creative juices flow. It is worth every moment!  Don’t be shy, share your thoughts, stories, and opinions in the comments below! I love to hear from you.  And if you like what you see, I am, in fact, published!  If you are interested, please pick up a copy!  The anthologies can be found here; MN Emerging Writers and the National Edition!

DFF: Friendly Neighborhood Muse

I thought I would shoot for another piece in the muse set… I am not fully happy with this one as of yet, but… it is a start.

Today’s Prompt:  Mr Roger’s   – new neighbors  –  Muse Series

Today’s Story:

Friendly Neighborhood Muse

Why doesn’t anything ever happen here? I mean… there is just nothing to inspire me.  Same things happening, day after day. Same hum drum routine. Hearing the sound of a door opening and closing, I spin, but there is no one at my door. What is going on?

“Well hello there.  I can’t help but feel like maybe you are taking for granted all the relationships passing you by.” A friendly voice says from my couch.

Photo by Christian Stahl on Unsplash

Looking to my couch I am taken aback… what in the world, why… no, how in the world is Mr Roger’s sitting on my sofa! There is something eerie about his presence.  Why would a childhood tv entity be in my house talking to me?

“I am here because you are failing to realize how much inspiration is all around you!” He says, a smile on his face.  “Take for instance your neighbors. You have a few… the ones to the North, you are always griping about. How they are doing crazy things like shooting some kind of guns, and selling drugs, or at least, that is what must be going on with all the comings and goings, and then there is the garbage and random people who seem to just camp out in the back yard.  How is that not inspiration for a story? It must be worthy of some snippets I am sure!  There there was the time the garbage guy came flying down the alley, the wrong way, stopping there, for just a moment before running off again, and it wasn’t even garbage day!  Or what about the guy to the East… the one with the revolving vehicles? He has more vehicles than one can keep up with, and somehow he uses them all on a daily basis. Maybe renting them out… who knows the possibilities are endless.  Look around you, at the every day… at the day to day things that you are taking for granted and you will see. Inspiration awaits everywhere.”

As he finished speaking he was fading away like he was never there.

“Wait…” I can’t think of anything… it was all too surreal.

“Remember… won’t you be… my neighbor?” his words fading away a whisper of a sound.  It was as if he was never there.

Shaking my head I look back at my screen and the words that flowed out.  Well… I’ll be. Seems I may have a friendly neighborhood muse after all. I think, as I take the time to start reading.

Well, I know, it is maybe not as funny as my first couple muse pieces, but it is a start!  What about you? What kind of muse do you see Mr Roger’s being?  Please share in the comments!  And, if you like what you find, I am published and you can find my work in the anthologies MN Emerging Writers and the National Edition!